CommunicationLife

Short Stories: Dealing with Roommates

Dealing with Roommates can be difficult!

When dealing with roommates, it always seems as though you are choosing to be the good guy or the bad guy, but it makes it even harder when your roommates are your friends. By using short stories and examples, dealing with roommates becomes a little easier with real-world communication tips. No one wants to be the annoying roommate that runs into the room where everyone is hanging out just to complain about how something isn’t done or how they’re annoying you.

Whether that is coming from the molding dishes, festering trash, invasion of your personal space, waking you up in the deepest of sleeps, using all the hot water, or even just simply disrespecting you. Any of these annoyances can be easily hashed out by simply communicating with each other. Hopefully, these next few personal stories will help someone with a little bit of insight on how to deal with their roommates and still be friends after.

I live in a house of four other guys, some go to school and some work full time, but needless to say tempers can run high at times.

The Glass and the Bottle

Possibly one of the biggest outburst was in the first few weeks of living with each other. I had just gotten home from my job and didn’t really feel like being bothered. In my head I was repeating “food, shower, bed,” but that soon changed. I come in through the backroom of the house only to hear Gary screaming in the living room at the other roommates about how someone broke his favorite drinking glass. Trying to keep my head down and not get involved I opened the fridge to get left some pizza. Unavoidably, a liquor bottle falls out and smashes on the ground.

Immediately a few choice words come streaming out of my mouth. This was amplified even more once Gary saw that it was his reserve whiskey lying on the ground. Caught like a deer in headlights, I know I needed to diffuse this situation as quickly as possible. Before Gary could lash out at me I quickly stated that I recognized that he was mad and that what took place was not purposely done to upset him.

Surprisingly, he walked away in a huff and went to his room. I spent the next fifteen minutes cleaning up the mess and questioning my roommates why he was so upset. Warren, the main target of Gary’s rage, explained how that when he was cooking he tossed a plastic measuring cup into the sink and broke Gary’s Guinness glass. Thinking it was no big deal he tossed the broken glass out only to be found later by Gary and that is when the screaming ensued.

Knowing that this glass held some type of sentiment to Gary, I explained why it was a big deal. I suppose Warren realized this because a few days later an Amazon package arrived at our door addressed to Gary. Gary opened the package and to his delight, he would find an exact copy of the glass Warren broke. Seeing this, I knew it was the perfect opportunity to reveal the small liquor bottle to replace the one I broke. After me and Warren’s simple gesture, all the negative tension was put aside because we began to recognize how it was affecting Gary.

The Pit

The next story is a little more gross, but way more common. The story is the fight about the pit we called the kitchen sink. A month into the new house with the guys, everything was going well. It was summer time. We all had full-time jobs filling our bank accounts, all of us hung out regularly, but one thing was being looked over the kitchen. It wasn’t until one morning we all had off coincidentally, we woke up to migrate to the living room. Sitting there Gary, Warren and I look at the other two and simultaneously ask if one of them just farted. Confused, they both looked back at us and said no. I got concerned because this stench was so pungent that it filled the entire room.

Acting like a detective’s dog, I started sniffing around the room. I kept going until I got closer to the kitchen and there it was. Immediately my face scrunched up like I was just punched in the face and cry out “The kitchen smells like death.” Everyone being curious they pull up their shirts to their noses and we venture in. Only to examine the vile we are all responsible for causing. At first glance, it seems kind of messy with a pile of dishes in the sink. Also, the garbage was a little too high. We were very wrong for assuming this was normal.

The dishes were molding and spouting fruit flies like a water fountain. The trash was harboring life and we dared not to open a bag of half-eaten tacos. For we feared it would scar our minds. Not to mention, the stench that felt as if it was creeping into your soul.

Disgusted, we retreated to the living room to combat this situation. Thinking quick to not only handle the immediate situation but also probable future occurrences I grabbed my laptop. I then opened Excel to collaborate and make a chores list. With our impromptu house meeting, we created a tradition that every Monday we come together and clean the communal areas. By following a chores chart I created on the day of “The Stink,” we have not had another occurrence.

Friends at the end of the day

All of us in the house have bonded over the fact that we can easily come together are discus our differences and complaint about outliving styles. By using our words to communicate how we have felt we have avoided many potential fights and emotional stress. Just because you live on your own with roommates that are also your friends doesn’t mean you have to stress out about being the bad guy. As long as you talk about what stresses you when it begins to bother you.

If you enjoyed this article, you may enjoy this one about why you should give your parents a call.